1996 Cadillac DeVille Review

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List Price Estimate
$337 - $725

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Edmunds' Expert Review

Vehicle overview

Poised to take over Big Kahuna duties when the Fleetwood departs at the end of the 1996 model year, the De Ville certainly looks the part. With its eggcrate grille, slab-sided flanks and long, thin, horizontal tail lamps, the De Ville is unmistakably a Cadillac.

The big news for 1996 is the addition of the Northstar 4.6-liter V8 to the De Ville. The new engine puts out 275-horsepower; a whopping 38 percent increase over the old 4.9-liter V8 under the hood of the 1995 model. With the new engine comes a new transmission, and long-life engine coolant designed to last for 100,000 miles. Also standard for 1996 is Cadillac's Integrated Chassis Control System and Road-Sensing Suspension.

Concours models get a power boost to differentiate them from basic De Ville models. The 300-horse unit from the Cadillac STS sits under the hood of the Concours, and a higher final drive ratio ensures that this sporty Cadillac feels faster than its whitewall trimmed sibling. Unique to the Concours is Rainsense, a system that can sense when raindrops are falling and turn the wipers on automatically, at the right speed to keep up with the rate of rainfall. Magnasteer variable effort steering replaces the De Ville's Speed-Sensitive gear on the uplevel Concours, and a Continuously Variable Road Sensing Suspension is standard as well.

Both De Villes change interior trim color to "Harmony Gray." New radios debut for 1996, and an integrated voice activated cell phone is available in portable or non-portable format. Customers can personalize door locks and seat positions for up to two drivers, and climate controls get an air recirculation function. Located in the glove box are new switches for valet lockout and turning the traction control system off. Daytime running lights make these behemoths more visible on the road.

In this class of American luxury automobiles, buyers have three choices: the De Ville, the Lincoln Town Car, and the Chrysler New Yorker/LHS. We'd take the De Ville Concours. It is quick, silent, somewhat agile, and offers scads of luxury in a tastefully restrained package.

1996 Highlights

Northstar V8 is installed in base DeVille, along with a new transmission, Integrated Chassis Control System and road-sensing suspension. Concours gets 25 horsepower boost to 300, along with a higher final-drive ratio for quicker pickup and an improved continuously variable road-sensing suspension. Automatic windshield wipers and new variable-effort steering are standard on the Concours. Daytime running lights debut on both of these monsters.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the Used 1996 Cadillac DeVille.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

Awesome Power &Luxery
Concours 4dr Sedan
Wow what power and ride is the best on the open road 32 vavle Northstar gets 17 in the city and 26 on the highway average. Best Caddy ever built.
Very satisfying, but not without issues.
4dr Sedan
I purchased this vehicle with 26,600 miles in September 20009. Previous car was a 2004 Mitsubishi Galant. My particular example has had some issues. Two weeks after purchase, engine started misfiring but only at under 5 MPH. Replaced plugs, wires, etc. didn't fix it. At this point I've gotten used to it and don't want to put more money into it. Keyless entry stopped working for no reason. The car gets poor fuel economy (probably related to the misfire), around 10 in the city and 19 on the highway. Still, this is a very satisfying car to drive. Plenty of power and space for 5 adults (front center position is a squeeze). Trunk is immense.
The Cadillac Deville
Caddy man,06/16/2009
4dr Sedan
When I purchased this vehicle, I expected only the best, considering it was a Cadillac, and I had heard nothing but good about the brand. I was not disappointed. Other than regular maintenance, I have had absolutely no trouble with my Cadillac, and I just love it. The Deville runs clean, very quiet, and smooth. It will start rigth up, even in -15F weather! The Northstar is fabulous. The responsive and agressive acceleration can likely blow the doors off of anything on the road. Gas mileage is exceptional for a car this size. The interior is superb. There is legroom abound inside the Deville. In all, the Deville is an excellent car all-around. I wouldn't trade it for anything else.
Cadillac Impressions
Paul Elzey,03/02/2007
Concours 4dr Sedan
Since the day of purchase, I have been very pleased with this automobile. The styling is simple beauty, the performance via the Northstar engine is superb without sacrificing fuel economy, which runs about 23 mpg avg. The interior has a very high level of luxury and one can drive this automobile all day without tiring.


NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver3 / 5
    Passenger1 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
  • Side Barrier Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver5 / 5
    PassengerNot Rated
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front SeatNot Rated
    Back SeatNot Rated
  • Rollover
    RolloverNot Rated
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of RolloverNot Rated
IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Not Tested
  • Roof Strength Test
    Not Tested
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Not Tested
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test

More about the 1996 Cadillac DeVille

Used 1996 Cadillac DeVille Overview

The Used 1996 Cadillac DeVille is offered in the following submodels: DeVille Sedan. Available styles include Concours 4dr Sedan, and 4dr Sedan.

What's a good price on a Used 1996 Cadillac DeVille?

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Which used 1996 Cadillac DeVilles are available in my area?

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Can't find a used 1996 Cadillac DeVilles you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used Cadillac DeVille for sale - 3 great deals out of 24 listings starting at $16,330.

Find a used Cadillac for sale - 12 great deals out of 24 listings starting at $24,955.

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Should I lease or buy a 1996 Cadillac DeVille?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

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